Previously the Ward Manager of the hospice’s specialist inpatient unit, Natalie Sanderson brings 18 years of nursing experience to the role, after qualifying as a nurse at the University of Leeds in 2001 and working in Haematology and Bone Marrow Transplants for an acute NHS trust.
Natalie shares her reason for joining Sue Ryder in 2019 as Ward Manager was to pursue her passion of working in palliative care “I wanted to be able to focus more on patient care and patient experience,” she shares. “And working in palliative care really gives you the time to focus on what your patients want and to deliver high quality, holistic care.”
“The care given at Sue Ryder is really patient-centred and there is great amounts of team work amongst the multidisciplinary teams here to help our patients achieve their goals.”
“We are here to support patients to achieve whatever they want to achieve.”
As Head of Clinical Services, Natalie is responsible for all of the clinical services delivered at the hospice, including the inpatient unit, virtual day therapy service, hospice community team and therapy teams.
Natalie shares the most rewarding part of her job is supporting care teams at the hospice. “Supporting our care teams so they can do their bit is really rewarding. They are the people on the frontline, seeing our patients and supporting their families. Anything I can do to enable them to do their jobs better is really rewarding.”
“The team at Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice is fantastic, the clinical teams give an exceptional level of care and they are so supported by the non-clinical teams and volunteers here. Our volunteers make a huge difference across so many different roles. We could not do our jobs without them.
“I would like to thank our volunteers for everything they do. I’d also like to thank our celebrity ambassador, Jamie Peacock, for all his valuable support raising funds and awareness of what we do too.”
After her time working in the palliative care sector, Natalie is keen to bust myths many people hold about hospices.
“I wish people knew just how uplifting working in palliative care really is. Dying doesn’t have to be something some of us are too afraid to speak about. Hospices help people who still have lots of life to live as well as those who are near the end of their lives.”
Natalie is also keen to share that Sue Ryder is a supportive employer which helps develop its staff too.
“I have been really supported to develop into my role as Head of Clinical Services,” she shares. “Sue Ryder identified my development needs and I have been supported to be in a place where I want to be in my career. This support applies for everyone. We can see where people want to be in their career and we help them take that next step. We enable everyone on the team to be the best that they can be.”
As part of her role Natalie is keen to hear from patients and families about the care they have received from the hospice, so she can help improve outcomes for future patients. “We are really keen to hear feedback from anyone who has used any of our services,” Natalie shares. “Is there anything we can do better or is there something we can do differently? If you have any suggestions then we would love to hear from you by emailing us on firstname.lastname@example.org”
For more information on pursuing a career in palliative care with Sue Ryder visit www.sueryder.org/palliativecareers
To find out how you can support the care teams led by Natalie to be there when it matters email email@example.com
About Sue Ryder:
Sue Ryder supports people through the most difficult times of their lives. Whether that’s a terminal illness, the loss of a loved one or a neurological condition – we’re there when it matters.
For over 65 years our doctors, nurses and carers have given people the compassion and expert care they need to help them live the best life they possibly can. We take the time to understand what’s important to people and give them choice and control over their care. For some this may mean specialist care in one of our centres, whilst others might need support in their own home.